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Would a Marvin Harrison Jr.-Jacoby Brissett combo work for Patriots?

Mayo shares what made Van Pelt stand out in Pats' offensive coordinator search
Mayo shares what made Van Pelt stand out in Pats' offensive coordinator search 00:35

BOSTON -- The wait for the NFL Draft continues. The need for NFL content persists. And so, we get ... ideas. Speculation. Debates. Discussion.

The 60-plus day wait is sure to be fun.

Nevertheless, let's explore one such piece of NFL Draft content from ESPN, in which ESPN's Aaron Schatz argues that the Patriots should not draft a quarterback but should instead draft wide receiver Marvin Harrison Jr. out of Ohio State and sign quarterback Jacoby Brissett as a free agent. (This suggestion was laid out in an article recommending bold moves for all 32 teams. Hence the inherent boldness.)

In this scenario, the Patriots would pass on whichever quarterback might be available at No. 3 overall, whether that's Drake Maye or Jayden Daniels. Schatz argues that Harrison is "the surer thing" in the draft, and that Brissett is "the perfect caretaker veteran quarterback."

"Brissett has made a career of surprisingly reasonable performances, with his best year coming with the 2022 Browns. And who was offensive coordinator of those Browns? None other than new Patriots coordinator Alex Van Pelt!" Schatz wrote. "With Brissett throwing to Harrison, the Patriots can then use a lower-round pick on a passer to develop behind Brissett. Michael Penix Jr. (Washington) might be an option in the second round, or Spencer Rattler (South Carolina) in the third or fourth round."

That 2022 season saw Brissett go 4-7 as Cleveland's starter, but he completed 64 percent of his passes for 2,608 yards (7.1 Y/A) and 12 touchdowns with six interceptions. His 88.9 passer rating stands as the best of his career (outside of last year's 146.8 rating on just 23 attempts), and he also rushed for 243 yards and a pair of touchdowns. He then headed to the bench after Deshaun Watson returned from his suspension. Brissett then barely played last year in Washington, attempting passes in just two games as Sam Howell's backup.

The concept of drafting a potential game-changing receiver is certainly enticing, but Brissett may be a hard sell to an organization and a fan base that's dealt with subpar quarterback play for the past two seasons with Mac Jones. Brissett's "surprisingly reasonable performances" may not get the people of New England overly excited for the new regime under Jerod Mayo.

And in this scenario, if the quarterback that the Patriots pass on -- either Maye or Daniels -- ends up being a long-term star in the league? Well, that's the type of miss that can hang over an organization for many years to come. (Ask fans of the Browns, Bears, 49ers, Jaguars, Titans, Jets, Chargers, Panthers and Bengals feel about not drafting Patrick Mahomes in 2017.)

At the same time, if the Patriots' front office doesn't see the third quarterback available as the guy ... a scenario like this one could become a reality. We only have to wait about nine weeks to find out.

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